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C8 Chapter 8

Elena Sergio.

KJ had the most amazing voice, that was for sure. To say that I was surprised to see him singing at the keyboard today, even though he wasn't as great with playing the keyboard, would be an understatement. As if his physique and facial features weren't mesmerizing enough, his voice when both singing and just speaking decided to be just as good. KJ seemed too good to be true. He was everything I ever dreamed of in a guy—tall, handsome, broad, funny, and most of all, interested in music like I was.

Laying on my bed, staring at the bland ceiling, I remembered our time together in the music class earlier today. How he'd told me to stay. The time I sat by, watching him play and how he listened to every correction I gave patiently, laughing even at some of his mistakes. I did wait, watching to see if his countenance would change because he thought I was correcting him a lot, but it didn't. He downright did all I said.

And the things we'd talked about after he was done playing. I wished dearly that it could be that way again tomorrow. That we could meet again and talk and talk without even realizing that time was fast going.

I guess Karen's tactics had worked after all. I remembered a lag in our conversation earlier when I wasn't saying anything and he wasn't either and we were just staring at each other, me unable to believe that I had this incredibly good-looking guy talking with me casually as if he'd known me forever. I remembered the way Kj's eyes held me during that time. In awe, like I was the most pretty face he'd ever seen, at least that's what I thought, chose to believe. Hoped to be true.

I sighed with a smile on my lips and turned over to my bed. Playing with the hem of my pillowcase, I decided I'd let Karen pick out my school wear again tomorrow, and do my makeup as well since apparently, she was right. If taking my time to prepare for school could make KJ look at me in amazement every day then I might as well keep doing it.

And now to Matthews. Couldn't he just support me on this? Why was he being so adamant anyway? I needed a cheer train, someone to whoop for me and encourage me when I feel down about myself and think I'm not fit enough for KJ. I needed him by my side, God knew I did, but the way he's been acting any time I brought up KJ wasn't helping at all.

He knew. He knew how things had been after Jackson and I fell out back in sophomore year. It wasn't easy, and I would remain forever grateful that he was always there to lighten my mood anytime it was down.

But now there was someone new I was interested in, and I knew many other girls were interested in him too, therefore I needed to have someone by my side whenever I was having doubts, so what was his deal? He didn't like KJ? If he didn't, why though?

I made up my mind. I was going to ask him about it tomorrow and he better gives me a tangible answer.

I sighed again. I was done with all my homework now, or else I won't be here daydreaming—night dreaming actually, since the sky outside had already darkened—about KJ. I didn't have music tomorrow nor History, so the chances of us talking were very slim. Unless I approached him at the cafeteria. Or he did. Either way, if he didn't I would. And I'll swoop in as the early bird. No way I was letting Anabel or any of her minions take the spotlight this time around.

I rolled over on the bed and placed my hands on my belly, my eyes once again fixed on my ceiling. What if KJ didn't want to talk to me though? What if he loses vibes too like Jackson had after his dad died? If he lost vibes, it'd seem like I was trying too hard, disturbing him. And I didn't want that.

I just hoped I wasn't walking on a tightrope with this one.

The moment I made to turn over again the sound of my ringtone, a rather cheesy one which I've been making to change but never really gotten around to—Let Me Love You by Justin Beiber—broke the silence in the room with its upbeat tempo.

Taken by surprise, my heart skipped a beat. At once, I sat up from the bed wondering who it could be. I rarely got calls. Aside from my family members and Matthews, I could get no more than two calls the entire year. It was my fault though. I hated calls and tended to ignore most.

Only when the call was nearing its ringing limit did I realize I was yet to answer it. By the time I got to my phone resting atop the dresser, the call cut.

The missed call symbol said the number was unknown. I wasn't going to call the number back, that was for sure. Unless the caller called back then it'd remain that way.

The moment I dropped my phone on top of my dresser once again, it began ringing, the caller the same unknown one.

Tentatively, wondering who it could be, I picked up my phone and swiped up to answer the call. Raising it to my ear, I said a tiny "Hello?"

The caller was silent for a moment before a voice came to me. "Elena?"

I didn't recognize the voice. It was masculine, that one I could make out but the owner of it I wasn't sure.

"Um, do I know you?" I asked with a mild frown.

"It's me, KJ," the voice said.

At the name, my heart skipped not one but two beats. Doubling back, I put a hand to my mouth to stop myself from letting out the yelp that had surfaced so suddenly.

"KJ?" I breathed, dropping my hand from my mouth.

"That's right. What's good?" He asked. "How are you doing?"

"I'm uh, great, I guess," I answered, walking back to my bed and sitting down, my heart still racing. "What about you?"

"I'm great too," he said.

"I didn't know it was you at first," I commented. "Your voice kinda sounds different on a call."

"Oh, does it?" He asked. "I guess it does. Although you're the first person to tell me that."

"Oh, I don't mean it in a bad way or anything." I tried to correct myself. "It sounds good, only a little deeper. No offense."

"None taken. My grandma back in Nigeria has said the same before too, so I believe you."

"Oh, okay then." I nodded. "Um, if you don't mind me asking, are all your family members here in the States, or do some still stay in Nigeria?"

"Uhh," he drawled, hesitating for a couple of moments. "No? My dad's here too, my mom, my grandma, my kid sister. Only my grandfather still stays in Nigeria. Some stuff about roots."

"Your grandma?" I frowned.

"Yeah," he replied. "My grandma."

"But you just said your grandma stays in Nigeria," I told him, confused.

"Oh!" He exclaimed. "No, I meant my aunt, she's here too. My grandma's back in Nigeria with her husband."

"Okay, because I was wondering," I said.

"It was an accident," he told me.

"I figured."

"So," he drew, "what are you doing?"

"Um, nothing." I shrugged, twirling my hair unconsciously. "Nothing at the moment. Just lying in my bed. I mean, I've already done all my homework and checked all my socials so yeah. What about you?"

"Same thing, although without the homework part," he said. "Just sitting here, thinking about you."

"Thinking about me?" I touched my chest, my heart starting another race.

"Yessir," he replied. "About our time today in music class. I enjoyed it."

I was blushing now, my face feeling like it was on fire. "I enjoyed it too. You have an amazing voice."

"I do?"

"Yeah, you do," I affirmed. "It was beautiful when you sang."

"Thanks," he said. "I guess it was."

"Would you like to go into music after high school?" I decided to ask. "It'd be nice if you did."

"Uh, no," he said, "but that's beside the point. I really can't get you out of my head huh. Even went as far as getting your number just to hear your voice again. You're so beautiful, Elena."

The way he said my name, and the words he said, I felt an odd feeling wash over me. One that made me think I was floating on white clouds.

"Um, thanks?" I swallowed, unsure of what to say.

"Yeah, I want to get to know you more," he told me. "What do you say we hang out tomorrow after school behind the water fountain?"

My voice came out shaky as I said, "O-okay, that's a great idea."

"That's what I think too. Wear something nice too, short, so I can see your legs, they're fire," he commented.

At his words, I felt a sudden feeling of warmth creep around my body.

"Sure," I croaked, "if that's what you like."

There was a brief pause on his side and for a moment I thought he'd cut the call because I could hear no other sound, but when I looked he was still on the call.

Just as I began to think it was a network issue, a sudden outburst of laughter followed. A feminine voice, laughing, laughing so very hard.

What was going on? I stared at my phone screen in confusion as the laughter continued to ring out. Was KJ with someone else? Was it me they were laughing at?

"You are so pathetic, Elena," a voice I knew all too well came to me, stealing my breath away.

Anabel.

"What's going on?" I voiced my thoughts, my brain unable to comprehend. "Are you with KJ?"

"You think that was KJ?" She laughed. "Why in the world would KJ call you? A loser, a loner, apathetic, desperate slob."

Still not understanding how I was speaking with KJ a second ago and now her, I stared at my phone screen.

"I told you I'll get you back. I warned you, Elena but you refused to listen, now I have our entire call recorded. That wasn't KJ. Obviously. KJ doesn't have time for an ugly desperado like you."

"Where's KJ?" I muttered, my brain already putting two and two together.

"You still don't get it?" She chuckled. "There's no KJ. It was me. Me all along. I'd simply used a voice changer and you fell for it all the way. How could you even think KJ would afford to waste his time on you, let alone be attracted to you.

"Desperate, eager, thirsty you. Look at you, all "Sure, if that's what you like", so ever ready to let anyone stick it in you. You're disgusting. You're not worth anyone's time. I don't even know why Matthews hangs around you. He could've been so much more without you. He's hot, handsome, and has a sexy smile, but for some reason he seems glued to you, ultimately ruining his reputation in school."

Dumbfounded and at a loss for words, I remained silent, realizing I'd just made a fool out of myself in front of Anabel. No wonder she had made a mistake with where Kj's family was, she didn't know. And stupid me didn't take the hint.

"I'm warning you, Elena. This is the very last time, stay the hell from KJ before you contaminate him with your poor skin. You're not even his type for goodness sake, what makes you think you stand a chance? That he'll be interested in you. I mean have you seen yourself in the mirror. Do you even notice the difference, the wide gap between KJ and you? There's something called level, Elena love, just so you know. If you weren't aware there is, and Kj's at the top while, you, you're at the bottom, so back off! For the very last time, Back. Off! I have our phone call on record. One more silly move from you and the whole school gets a piece of it. Dumbo."

By the next moment, the line went dead.

For several minutes, I remained on my bed, silent, still unable to believe what just happened. And when reality finally dawned, I took in a sharp breath as tears rushed to my eyes and my phone slipped out of my hand, dropping to the floor.

What had I just done?

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